A few months ago, my husband and I lived through the insanity (with love) of our daughter getting married. The strategic planning and balancing of family, friends, and vendors was worse than plotting a novel. When I recently read Murder with Ganache: A Key West Food Critic Mystery by Lucy Burdete (aka Roberta Isleib), I was reminded by its combination of mystery, romance, family conflict, food and recipes of just how smoothly our wedding weekend went. I found the book to be fun, witty and with just the right amount of clues to keep me guessing to the end.
In Murder with Ganache, Haley Snow, the food critic for Key Zest magazine, is juggling meeting her writing deadlines for restaurant reviews, doughnut and sticky bun tastings, and an article on the Hemingway cats while handling all of the details, include baking 200 cupcakes, for her best friend’s wedding. Haley’s plate overflows when family drama and murder is added to it.
The summary blurb notes that Haley’s “parents come barreling down on the island like a category 3 hurricane and on the first night in town her stepbrother, Roby, disappears into the spring break party scene in Key West. When Haley hears that two teenagers have stolen a jet ski, she sets aside her oven mitts and goes in search of Rory. She finds him, barely conscious, but his female companion isn’t so lucky. Now Haley has to let the cupcakes cool and assemble the sprinkles of clues to clear her stepbrother’s name – before someone else gets iced.”
Murder with Ganache is an enjoyable read and a well-constructed mystery that also manages to embrace family. In addition, the book brings the quirkiness of Key West to life by including details such as the Hemingway House’s cats and the famous Courthouse Deli Bench (the bench has its own Facebook page).
Much as I enjoyed the memories that Murder with Ganache brought back, I’m really happy that our wedding weekend was comparably tame.